M1010 fire rig to camper conversion

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chevymike

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yeah, some are, some are not reversible. Fingers crossed it works. I know on my '48 Chevy, moving less then 10mph, it forces enough air that is would drop my radiator temps, with the mechanical fan, even at low RPM. I converted to an electric so that is not a problem anymore. :)
 

cruzer747

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So I made it back all in one piece... almost 1000 more miles on the odo bringing the vehicle just over 15k. So first thing to address is that having the fan spinning proper and not fighting the airflow things are MAYBE noticeably better by a tad but the problem of climbing grades for the 700r4 and keeping heat below the desired threshold still remains. There are two things I can do now that can help solve this.... put in an additional large active cooler below the vehicle somewhere and/or make better power to be able to climb with a locked tc. As things are many times when the grade is maybe %15 or so (I need to actually measure where she starts struggling) but at a certain point she can't muster the power to pull up a hill in 2nd gear locked up so it is either 2nd gear with slippage(heat), or give it shots of 1st gear and then back to a slowly bogging down 2nd... or dont go up the hill. Pretty sure the tc will not lock up in first. At least I can not feel it when I tried. In a perfect world I would not need to rely so heavily on the manual lockup so I will be getting a cooler that will hopefully be big enough to let er slip in second all I want. Tranny is still working flawlessly. Mileage was about 12.5 11.5 (just did the math) the entire trip with varied driving.

I also had a weird thing happen that I thought I would mention here. After filling up (topping off as much as possible) and driving for 30 minutes or so with the nose up and then stopping for a 10 minute break with the nose still upwards, I lost prime. No weeping filter, never before and never after have I seen this, my theory is that the tank was not venting and under vacuum and the angle (nose up) never changing came into play? Cranked for 3 or 4 good long tries. It was not like there was a stumble at all, I considered the FSS for a moment but decided to check with a quick shot of silicone spray and she fired and ran like nothing ever happened without any sort of roughness at all. Any ideas?

I scrambled around to some pretty cool spots, even tried the rubicon and made it almost 2.5 miles until the road was beyond what I was willing to subject it to as the 33" tires only get you so high off of some of them rocks!

Also got a pair of brushless fans for the cab and epoxied some magnets on em, they were nice as the temps were often above 80 and touched the low hundreds! Pics are pre epoxy. Moved the bbq light so that you can actually see what you are cooking. (pics are from before I finished the wiring)
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When I get more time to work on it I will be focused on squeezing more power out of the motor before adding much additional weight. I did make a nice step that probably weighs #30 os so, just in time as the plastic step stool imploded recently.
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So next on the list is
more engine power (I have had to switch to 4L just to start off from an incline a few points, I should also recheck my vehicle weight at this point)
camera system
hot water/heat exchanger
cargo basket
cell booster (or at some point I will get a dedicated device all set up with detailed forest route maps... thought I had enough but we winged it a bit as far as where we were headed) I now have a very good idea of how to have a cell/tablet holder.... that one will get done before the next long trip for sure as my navigator was less than enthusiastic and I would be lying if I said we never took a wrong turn out there on all of the dirt roads.



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chevymike

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Glad you got out and no serious problems. Looks like fun!

I was reading the instructions for the B&M Hi-Tek cooler (plate style with fan) and it specifically says you must have air being pulled through the cooler. You have it mounted so the fan is forward of the cooler, in front of the radiator. In this configuration, you would need to have the fan "pulling" air through it but that is backwards to when you are driving, since air would be forced into the engine compartment and stopping the cooler fan from pulling. That cooler would need to be flipped 180* so it has the fan in front of the radiator.

What I would do, to try to control trans temps would be, add the largest plate style cooler in front of the radiator AND mount your current cooler/fan combo up under between the frame rails behind the bumper. I would face the fan down and make sure there is a 2" gap above the cooler. Then I would plumb the trans output to the cooler/fan combo, then up through the plate cooler in front of the radiator and then back to the trans.

In this config the hot fluid would go through the cooler/fan combo, allowing the fan to pull heat out of the fluid. Then it would go through the plate cooler, to remove more heat BUT not adding much additional heat into the radiator since the fluid would already have been "pre-cooled". Then it goes back to the trans.

Yeah, lack of power is a huge problem. I am seeing this with my rig and I haven't even got up to our local mountains. We have some short but steep grades in town and it really shows the lack of power. The Gear Vendor helps a little as I can split gears and having 2.5 (between 2nd and 3rd) has been useful where one is too much and the other too little. I keep thinking "do I want to continue down this 6.2 path or swap over to a LS 6.0 or 8.1 EFI big block". If staying with the 6.2, turbo is likely going to be a requirement. Is the juice worth the squeeze?
 

cruzer747

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Glad you got out and no serious problems. Looks like fun!

I was reading the instructions for the B&M Hi-Tek cooler (plate style with fan) and it specifically says you must have air being pulled through the cooler. You have it mounted so the fan is forward of the cooler, in front of the radiator. In this configuration, you would need to have the fan "pulling" air through it but that is backwards to when you are driving, since air would be forced into the engine compartment and stopping the cooler fan from pulling. That cooler would need to be flipped 180* so it has the fan in front of the radiator.

What I would do, to try to control trans temps would be, add the largest plate style cooler in front of the radiator AND mount your current cooler/fan combo up under between the frame rails behind the bumper. I would face the fan down and make sure there is a 2" gap above the cooler. Then I would plumb the trans output to the cooler/fan combo, then up through the plate cooler in front of the radiator and then back to the trans.

In this config the hot fluid would go through the cooler/fan combo, allowing the fan to pull heat out of the fluid. Then it would go through the plate cooler, to remove more heat BUT not adding much additional heat into the radiator since the fluid would already have been "pre-cooled". Then it goes back to the trans.

Yeah, lack of power is a huge problem. I am seeing this with my rig and I haven't even got up to our local mountains. We have some short but steep grades in town and it really shows the lack of power. The Gear Vendor helps a little as I can split gears and having 2.5 (between 2nd and 3rd) has been useful where one is too much and the other too little. I keep thinking "do I want to continue down this 6.2 path or swap over to a LS 6.0 or 8.1 EFI big block". If staying with the 6.2, turbo is likely going to be a requirement. Is the juice worth the squeeze?
It was fun, just wish I could get out for longer but damn them responsibilities and bills.... anywho, I think that putting it back to a pull fan configuration might net potentially %10 better cooling vs flipping the blade and polarity to make it a push fan as I have done, I am confident that the need for additional cooling would still remain. I like your idea and think that is just what I am going to do. I will need to take some measurements but was looking at the hayden 1299 for going in front of the rad where the current one is now and then relocating the existing underneath and reverting back to a pull configuration allowing the cooler to be up higher with the fan below. Having a cooler opposed to passive airflow with fan off pre radiator should not impose too much problem for elongated trans warmup.

I think my power gameplan is to try and ration additional weight (no second fuel tank) and then do some minor mods for air and fuel.... I have some parts from a 6.5 handy so I can throw on the 3" exhaust, maybe get the intake plumbed outside of the engine area and get an egt gauge and turn up the fuel a touch swap in the new style fuel filter... . Beyond that I will probably just grit my teeth on the slow climbs and enjoy the scenery. Long term I am not sure but I think I will eventually make the time to pop test the injectors and also do a compression test on the motor just to make sure I am not missing anything.
 

chevymike

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Don't go with any tube type coolers. They do not cool nearly well enough at a given size compared to a plate style. Highly recommend B&M coolers!!!


This would be a great size to put in.
 

cruzer747

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Don't go with any tube type coolers. They do not cool nearly well enough at a given size compared to a plate style. Highly recommend B&M coolers!!!


This would be a great size to put in.

I hate to be contrarian but the btu rating on the 1299 is (hayden provides a range, not a single number which to me would imply the B&M cooler is using the top range # for BTUs) but anyways, at the low end of the hayden btu rating it is still %20 better than the B&M (36,500 vs 29,299 btu) and if you wanted to compare top btus then it would be (61,000 vs the 29,200 btu).

I am no expert but at a certain point, size will win in a race to dissipate heat. The B&M 13x11.5x1.75 vs the tube 22x24x1.5, the 1284 is 17x24x1.5.

All of this said after some measuring it looks like the hayden 1284 would be the one that fits vs the 1299. Comperable ratings (37,500-59,000 btu).

edit- also at he face this B&M is 150sq" and the hayden 1284 is 408 sq". That is almost 3x the surface area so I would not be surprised to see a larger less effecient cooler outperform the smaller one at a cost of space. Are there any other downsides to the tube cooler?

Am I trusting the numbers too much? I agree that if the size were equal the plate would outperform a tube cooler.
 
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cruzer747

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I read up a little more on haydens coolers and there are some other interesting things I thought I would add.... they have a plate cooler that is about the same size as the b&m and they rated it between 10,000-23,500 btus compared to the 29,200 rating the b&m gives There are more plates on the b&m so that may explain it. I scrolled a bit further down the hayden catalog and found this interesting unit the 801 which is a plate cooler 4.5x30, I will go measure and see if I can stuff it in front of the radiator
 

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chevymike

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I was more using the example of a plate style versus tube style cooler. Size for size, plate style has historically always been better and why almost all auto manufacturers have move to them. This was a huge thing back in my Baja Bug days. Now if you compare a tube style that is 3x bigger than the plate one, then I would hope the large cooler would cool more. I also wouldn't hold a ton of weight to btu numbers as they tend to be misleading and in a perfect lab environment.
 
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